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I confine my
it. There is a class of poets—and a large onewho, like the Novelists, belong to the Circulating Libraries, and flutter into ephemeral notice upon the wings of a paragraph. By nature the commonest insects, they owe their coloured plumage to the forcing action of artificial warmth. Equally feeble in their minds and their verses, the shadow of your hand will “ mar their murmurings *.” Let no founder of a Commonwealth think of banishing poetry; he will find in it a powerful helper in the amelioration of the destiny of man. remarks, of course, to those nobler spirits enriched by learning, elevated by wisdom, sanctified by religion ; unto whom Poetry is as a ladder, whereby to climb into the invisible world: men who return from their celestial Colloquies with a brightened countenance, and an exalted heart. The true Bard ascends to receive knowledge, he descends to impart it; and regarding his art as the most dignified of all-since it is learning illuminated by fancy; fancy kindled by a fire from the Altar; looking, I say, at his high calling, he devotes his whole energies to the task, and his entire life shapes itself into one great and beautiful Poem. Thus the Creations of his mind become his companions ; they talk to him ; minister to him ; watch over him. So Chaucer, in his dungeon, was cheered by
the Lady of Lore*; and who knows not of the radiant face that beamed upon Tasso, in his vault at Ferrara-and such a vault !—pining in hunger, nakedness, and despair. So, too, was the night of Milton brightened by—
Forms that glitter in the Muses' rayand the beauty of angelic wings shone upon the darkness. His sojourn at Cambridge had, at least, familiarized him with the dim religious light; and often while lingering with solemn awe through the chapel of King's College,
While from our sight With gradual stealth the lateral windows hide Their Portraitures, their stone-work glimmers, dyed In the soft chequerings of a sleepy light, Martyr or King, or sainted Eremite.
Often during these hallowed seasons, when the soul was lifted into heaven, have I thought upon the rapture with which his youthful heart must have acknowledged the enchantment of the place :
They dreamt not of a perishable home
Alluding to the Testament of Love, supposed to have been composed during his imprisonment.
ONE HOUR WITH HENRY MARTYN,
AND A GLANCE AT
THE PRESENT STATE OF RELIGIOUS FEELING
IN THE UNIVERSITY.
PALEY, in commenting upon the propagation of Christianity, dwells with much earnestness upon the success of the Apostolic Ministry, as a strong proof of the divine origin of the religion. For what had the apostles, he says, to assist them in their preaching which the modern missionaries have not. If piety and ardent zeal had been sufficient, they possess them in a high degree; for piety and zeal could alone excite them to the undertaking. If simplicity of life, or purity of manners, were the allurement, the conduct of these men is irreproachable. If the influence of education and learning be required, which of the modern missionaries is not superior to all the apostles, both absolutely and relatively *. The internal power and beauty of the religion remain the same; in its precepts equally holy, in its morality equally chaste, in its exhortations equally eloquent.
In one respect, indeed, the modern missionary
* Evidences of Christianity, part 2, sect. 2.
possesses a peculiar advantage. Prophecy, was the beautiful remark of Bishop Newton, is a growing evidence; and so it has proved itself. Every year has added something to its strength; the accomplishment of the local prophecies, as related and demonstrated in the works of Burckhardt, and other eastern travellers, is decisive and incontro vertible. Their fulfilment furnishes another powerful argument to the Christian missionary; yet how ineffectual, how discouraging the labours even of the most active, and the most successful. Look, for instance, at India, the scene of Henry Martyn's unwearied exertions. How little has a highly educated and intelligent church been able to perform during the whole period of its establishment. How few names have been added to the Book of Life! In that rich and luxurious climate the Tree of Divine Knowledge seems alone to pine. Yet its root has been nourished by the ashes of Christian brethren. Mothers, and fathers, and sisters, and brothers, have been forsaken for the cause,-not even the domestic hearth has been preferred before it.
The dearest associations, the most delightful studies, have been joyfully abandoned. “ This is the day,” says Mr. Martyn in his Indian Diary, “ that I left Cambridge. My thoughts frequently recurred with many tender recollections to that seat
of my beloved brethren; and I again wandered in spirit among the trees on the banks of the Cam.”
Nor has the self-sacrificing temper which animated the original Preachers of Christianity been dead in their successors. What savage sea, or what inhospitable shore has not witnessed their exertions. They, too, have been in perils by land, in perils in the sea, in perils from false brethren ; in fastings often, in prison often; in cold and nakedness. They, too, have willingly become poor that they might make many rich,-yet has all this enthusiasm, , all this self-consecration of the soul and body to one great pursuit reaped only a barren harvest. We have reason to believe that the apostles converted more in a single week than the united efforts of European missionaries during fifty years. Are we not, therefore, driven upon the conclusion that they possessed means of conviction which we have not ; that they had proofs to appeal to which we want* ?
But while, if viewed only in reference to the avowed object of his mission, Mr. Martyn's success was trifling, relatively he performed the most valuable and deeply important services to the cause of religion. His translation of the Scriptures into the Eastern tongue laid a foundation for the gradual subjection of the popular mind to the precepts of the Bible. In accomplishing this great task, he